Brno is the second largest Czech city and definitely worth a visit for several reasons. If you just look in your wallet, Petrov which is one of the symbols of Brno, is depicted on the Czech coin with value 10 crowns. If you are going to spend a weekend in Brno or even just one night, you will certainly appreciate a few interesting tips that you should not miss.
1. Ossuary underneath the Church of St. James
The ossuary of St.James’Church in Brno was discovered only recently in 2001. During the archaeological survey, one of the largest ossuaries in Europe has been found here. More than 50,000 skeletal remains are estimated to exist in the ossuary. After costly and lengthy reconstruction, the ossuary was opened to the public in 2012. Human remains are piled into several interconnected underground chambers. The visit is enhanced by classical music from all corners so you can breathe the transience of human life. You should not omit the ossuary when sightseeing of Brno.
One of the ossuary walls filled with bones and skulls
The main and largest chamber of the ossuary
2. Špilberk Castle
Špilberk Castle was built at the end of the 12th century and stands at the top of a hill of the same name. The fortress can be seen from many places in Brno and forms one of the main dominant of the town. The castle served for most of its history for military purposes. It served firstly to consolidate power in the Moravian countries, subsequently its function has changed to a fortress or a prison. Today, various museum collections are stored in the castle. Take a stroll to Spilberk in good weather. The entire hill is a well-kept park and you can admire countless city views along the way. At the castle we recommend visiting unique casemates that have previously served as a jail.
Overall view of Špilberk in the direction of Petrov
The inner part of Špilberk is full of people in the sunny weather, who enjoy refreshments from the pub
3. Bunker 10-Z
The bunker was built by the Nazis at the foot of the Špilberk hill at the end of the Second World War. After 1948 the communists redesigned the bunker to be a secret nuclear fallout shelter for the leading representatives of Brno. The public has not had the any idea about the bunker for a long time. In 2015 the bunker was opened as a museum from communism era, including a large part of the original furniture. You can visit the dormitory, the diesel power station, the air purifier, or the telephone exchange. At the end of the tour there is also a small bar, which offers a typical assortment of times before the Velvet Revolution.
The corridors of the 10-Z bunker are full of inventory
Corridors are almost endless
Room where you can sleep
4. Villa Tugendhat
Tugendhat’s Villa is one of the most famous buildings of the interwar period in the Czech Republic. It was built in 1928 by architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Although it does not look very significant at first glance from the architectural point of view, it is still an inspiration for many architects, especially because of technical innovations and interconnection of the interior with the exterior.
Visiting this villa is one of the necessary stops in Brno, especially because between 2010 and 2012 the Villa Tugendhat underwent renovation and restoration work, during which both the structure and the adjoining gardens were restored to their original appearance.
To visit the interior the reservation must be done several weeks in advance and during summer weekends maybe even a few months in advance. However, if you can not find any ticket, you can visit at least the villa garden.
View of Villa Tugendhat from the garden
Thanks to the windows that go into the floor, the connection between the interior and the exterior is almost absolute
Petrov is the name of the historical part of Brno, which is among the most important places in all of Moravia. The main attraction is the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul and the adjacent residence of the Brno bishopric. The name Petrov is sometimes used for the cathedral itself, which is probably the oldest church in Brno, since its foundations date back to the 12th century. The current neo-Gothic form was designed by architect Augusta Kirsteina in 1901.
In addition to the cathedral are also worth a visit: the Denis Park, the Studánka Park and the Diocesan Museum. The whole part of the city invites you to romantic walks in the parks and in the narrow, winding streets.
The peak of Petrov with the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul
The interior of the St. Peter and Paul Cathedral
Statue commemorating saints Cyril and Methodius
6. Moravian Muzeum
The Moravian Land Museum in Brno was founded in July 1817 by the imperial decree of Franz I. This is why it is a second oldest and largest museum institution in the Czech Republic. Currently, the museum has more than 6 million items in various collections of natural and social sciences in its collections. In addition to permanent exhibitions, the museum offers countless temporary exhibitions on various topics. The exposition in Brno are divided into five buildings (Dietrichstein Palace, Bishop’s Court, the Noble Palace, the Anthropos Pavilion and the Leoš Janáček Memorial), which are worth a visit. I recommend checking the current exhibition on the web site before the visit and where the buildings are located.
Baroque Dietrichstein Palace on the Green Market in Brno
A group of buildings called the Bishop’s Court
7. Something more
Brno offers also other places that are worth visiting apart from these major attractions.
- Labyrinth under the cabbage market – A deep labyrinth of corridors and various spaces beneath the square Zelný trh where you can look at the mysterious corners of medieval corridors and cellars
- Walk around the squares – In the center of Brno you can find several squares (Svoboda Square, Cabbage market, Dominican square, Moravian square, Jakub square, Comenius square, etc.) and it is worthwhile to walk through the alleys and admire beautiful houses
- Walk in the park – if you are already tired of the city, then head to one of the parks – such as park Lužánky
- Night life – if we talk about Brno, we can not miss the wide range of nightlife. There are countless bars, pubs and clubs in the center. The offer is so wide that everyone can choose.
- Veveří Castle – sometimes it is referred to as a second Brno castle. If you have enough time, get on the boat and head for the town to Veveří Castle.
#Bonus: How to get to Brno
You can fly to Brno Airport, but there are only a few regular flights (you can try Skyscanner). So the best way is to use other bigger cities around, such as Prague, Vienna or Bratislava. All of these cities are about 2 hours from Brno. There are 3 best ways how to get to Brno from these cities: